In the Bourne series, the assassins (who are the central characters) are referred to by their controlling agency merely as “assets.” Sometimes I fear that within Christian ministry, we fall into the terrible habit of treating people as assets – instruments to help us get ministry done successfully rather than people with souls. One of the values I remind myself of often is that people are not a means for getting ministry done. People are the ministry. And those who volunteer are not placed in our path to make us successful, but so that we can help them to grow and to move forward.
Church metrics. That’s not a very pretty phrase. In fact, for many, it seems cold. If church becomes a numbers game, then people become “just a number,” and when people are just a number, we’ve failed to emulate the ministry of Jesus. But if we fail to count anybody, we allow people to slip through the cracks and therefore fail to emulate the ministry of Jesus.
I was just reading an interview with a blogger named Rose who mentioned wearing “many hats.” In her case, “wife, mother, respite worker, proud shih-tzu owner, blogger, published poet, freelance writer, as well as the owner and administrator of todayswriting.com and bloggertalk.net.” This got me to thinking about my own life and yours too. In fact, it got me thinking about how the wearing of “many hats” is a trend.
People… they’re all around us! There are nearly seven billion of them on the planet and they’re all different. I think God purposely puts us in relationships (marriage, work, church, etc.) with people who are vastly different than we are and then chuckles as we try to get along. But get along we must – it’s part of our purpose. One of the greatest challenges of leadership is learning to be patient with people. The payoff is huge, but it’s certainly not easy.